U.S. Senators, Chuck Grassley, Chairman of Senate Judiciary
Committee, and Dick Durbin, Assistant Democratic Leader in
co-sponsorship with Senators Bill Nelson, Richard Blumenthal, and
Sherrod Brown introduced a bipartisan legislation known as
"The H-1 and L-I Reform Act, 2015" in the Senate seeking
reform of H-1B visa programme and modification of wage
In addition to retaining most restrictions proposed in the
previous legislation of 2013, this Bill proposes to introduce a new
system for allocating skilled-worker visas, tougher eligibility
standards, new minimum wage standards and other employer
obligations, and limiting the ability of employers to place H-1B
and L-1 employees at third-party worksites or otherwise contract
for their services.
Based on Senator Durbin's statement the "The H-1 and
L-I Reform Act, 2015" will prohibit the replacement of
American workers by H-1B or L-1 visa holders and end the abuse of
displacing qualified American workers and facilitating outsourcing
of American jobs and will protect American workers from
exploitation. This reform is being considered as a critical
component of fixing the broken immigration system wherein foreign
outsourcing companies have used loopholes in the laws to displace
qualified American workers and facilitate the outsourcing of
This legislation aims to limit larger IT companies from applying
for H-1B visas if more than 50% of their workers are already on H-1
or L-1 visas. Also, preference will be given to U.S. graduates and
advanced degree holders who are paid higher wages. Further, this
Bill will also give enhanced authority to the Department of Labor
to penalize fraudulent or abusive conduct as well as require the
agency to keep detailed statistics on wages and education levels of
visa holders and also have the authority to investigate and audit
the employer compliance. In addition, the bill also includes
establishing the wage floor for the L-1 workers, permitting the
authority to the Homeland Security Department for investigating,
auditing and enforcing the compliance with the L-1 program
This legislation will be considerably more restrictive than any
previous legislation introduced by Senators Durbin and Grassley in
the last Congress which did not make it through.
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In response to growing demands to introduce dual citizenship from its overseas diaspora,
India introduced the concept of the person of Indian origin (a "PIO") in 2002 and an overseas
citizen of India (an "OCI") in 2006 as categories of persons who enjoy certain legal rights in
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